Post List

  • July 3, 2010
  • 02:00 AM

Octopus Sensory Systems: Part 2.5

by Mike Lisieski in Cephalove

Octopuses (Enteroctopus dofleini) Recognize Individual Humans (2010) by Anderson et al. in the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science claims that octopuses can recognize their individual human keepers. Wait, what?... Read more »

Anderson, R., Mather, J., Monette, M., & Zimsen, S. (2010) Octopuses (Enteroctopus dofleini) Recognize Individual Humans. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 13(3), 261-272. DOI: 10.1080/10888705.2010.483892  

  • July 3, 2010
  • 12:03 AM

Childhood Mental Health Affects Adult Income

by Child Psych in Child Psych

A recent study in Social Science and Medicine demonstrates for the first time that childhood psychological problems have long-lasting effects on adult income. Because the study compares siblings with and without psychological conditions, the authors were able to control for the effects of childhood family background and neighborhood on adult income. They also controlled for the effects of physical illness on mental health problems.

Researchers from the Rand Corporation analyzed data from the U........ Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 08:43 PM

Living and Forgetting

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

And I'll be easyLike living and forgettingAnd if I pick you upI'll be sure to let you down-Living and Forgetting, Glasstown (mp3)Forgetting Emotional Information Is HardOur memory for emotional events is generally better than our memory of neutral events. This is a key issue in developing treatments for post-traumatic stress disorder. How do we rid ourselves of unpleasant memories? In structured laboratory environments, the best way to forget is intentional inhibition during the encoding phase,........ Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 06:01 PM

Why Tibetans breathe so easy up high

by Razib Khan in Gene Expression

I said yesterday I would say a bit more about the new paper on rapid recent high altitude adaptation among the Tibetans when I’d read the paper. Well, I’ve read it now. Sequencing of 50 Human Exomes Reveals Adaptation to High Altitude:
Residents of the Tibetan Plateau show heritable adaptations to extreme altitude. We sequenced [...]... Read more »

Yi, X., Liang, Y., Huerta-Sanchez, E., Jin, X., Cuo, Z., Pool, J., Xu, X., Jiang, H., Vinckenbosch, N., Korneliussen, T.... (2010) Sequencing of 50 Human Exomes Reveals Adaptation to High Altitude. Science, 329(5987), 75-78. DOI: 10.1126/science.1190371  

  • July 2, 2010
  • 05:18 PM

Cinnabar moths and caterpillars

by Africa Gomez in BugBlog

During a walk in a local wildlife garden we noticed the first Cinnabar Moth (Tyria jacobaeae) caterpillars of the year, and an adult also flew by. The caterpillars clustered at the flower heads of Ragwort (Senecio jacobaea), which they prefer as food, and had defoliated the plants quite a bit. Many had already left in search for greener pastures and were around the ground or wandering over other plants. Cinnabar Moth caterpillars have a strong tendency to cluster together, possibly an antipredat........ Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 05:10 PM

It's Like Cocaine, But No Fun

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

In a very interesting paper, Dutch pharmaceutical company NeuroSearch, in conjunction with Canadian research corporation Kendle Early Stage, report on Subjective and Objective Effects of the Novel Triple Reuptake Inhibitor Tesofensine in Recreational Stimulant Users.Tesofensine is a drug NeuroSearch are developing for obesity, and they report that it's shown excellent weight-loss-inducing properties in early clinical trials, although of course they would say that. What makes "tes-fens" so inte........ Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 04:43 PM

Scared by the light

by Mo in Neurophilosophy

WHO could have guessed that a protein isolated from pond scum would transform the way researchers investigate the brain? The protein, called channelrhodopsin (ChR), is found in algae and other microbes, and is related to the molecules in the human eye that capture light particles. Both versions control the electrical currents that constantly flow in and out of cells, and which are critical for generating the nervous impulses generated by neurons. Unlike its human equivalent, algal ChR controls t........ Read more »

Johansen, J., Hamanaka, H., Monfils, M., Behnia, R., Deisseroth, K., Blair, H., & LeDoux, J. (2010) Optical activation of lateral amygdala pyramidal cells instructs associative fear learning. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1002418107  

  • July 2, 2010
  • 04:43 PM

Message Undeliverable

by Journal Watch Online in Journal Watch Online

Plants have their own way of communicating: they send chemical signals to alert each other when they’ve been nibbled by herbivores. But according to a study in Ecology Letters, ozone pollution can hinder the delivery of these messages.
When a plant is attacked, it may release chemicals called volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are detected […] Read More »... Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 02:27 PM

Combined NOTCH and EGFR inhibition leads to synthetic lethality in breast cancer

by Sally Church in Pharma Strategy Blog

This was a great paper I found while browsing My 6 Sense last night, a free but very cool app on my iPhone that takes my Google Reader rss feeds and intuitively tries to select the individual items (e.g. clinical...... Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 10:37 AM

Were Crests and Sails Used in Competition for Mates?

by Brian Switek in Dinosaur Tracking

Paleontologists have long been fascinated by bizarre structures on prehistoric animals. The horns of Styracosaurus, the sail of Dimetrodon, the crest of Tupuxuara and more—these odd ornaments raise the questions, “what were those structures used for, and how did they evolve?” In a recent review of dinosaur evolution, paleontologists Kevin Padian and Jack Horner suggested [...]... Read more »

Tomkins, J., LeBas, N., Witton, M., Martill, D., & Humphries, S. (2010) Positive Allometry and the Prehistory of Sexual Selection. The American Naturalist, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1086/653001  

  • July 2, 2010
  • 09:25 AM

How do we know Gabon's 'multicellular' fossils are 2.1 billion years old?

by Chris Rowan in Highly Allochthonous

The fossil record prior to 550 million years ago is so patchy that every discovery is going to cause some fanfare. That is certainly case with these odd looking things, which have been proclaimed in Nature as the oldest mulitcellular organisms ever found.

A 2.1 billion year old fossil atop the bed it was preserved in. Source: Albani et al., Fig. 2

These flat, dish-like fossils are found at a number of horizons within a black shale unit of the Francevillian Group in southeast Gabon. They grew........ Read more »

Albani, A., Bengtson, S., Canfield, D., Bekker, A., Macchiarelli, R., Mazurier, A., Hammarlund, E., Boulvais, P., Dupuy, J., Fontaine, C.... (2010) Large colonial organisms with coordinated growth in oxygenated environments 2.1 Gyr ago. Nature, 466(7302), 100-104. DOI: 10.1038/nature09166  

  • July 2, 2010
  • 08:30 AM

Dietary nitrate, muscle metabolism, and physical performance

by Colby in

I posted previously about 2 studies that suggest dietary nitrate enhances some measures of performance.  Another by one of the same groups (Bailey et al.) reproduces these findings and further explores mechanisms. For a background of the existing speculated mechanisms, … Continue reading →... Read more »

Bailey SJ, Fulford J, Vanhatalo A, Winyard PG, Blackwell JR, Dimenna FJ, Wilkerson DP, Benjamin N, & Jones AM. (2010) Dietary nitrate supplementation enhances muscle contractile efficiency during knee-extensor exercise in humans. Journal of applied physiology (Bethesda, Md. : 1985). PMID: 20466802  

  • July 2, 2010
  • 08:00 AM

Sleepy Women Have Poorer Health?

by Arya M. Sharma in Dr. Sharma's Obesity Notes

According to the National Sleep Foundation’s 2007 Sleep in America poll, just published by Eileen Chasens and colleagues from the University of Pittsburgh in this month’s issue of Behavior and Sleep Medicine, almost 20% of community-dwelling women aged 40 to 60 years reported sleepiness that consistently interfered with daily life.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the sleepy subsample [...]... Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 08:00 AM

Cyber attacks are criminal

by David Bradley in SciScoop Science Forum

The internet, electronic communications channels and computer technology that controls critical infrastructure together represent a new combat front on the international political stage. Several nations have been accused recently of cyber attacks, not least Russia and China, on the data centres of other governments. Whole power supply systems have been compromised on occasion and even [...]... Read more »

Sérgio Tenreiro de Magalhães, Henrique M. Dinis Santos, Leonel Duarte dos Santos, & Hamid Jahankhani. (2010) Cyberwar and the Russian Federation: the usual suspect. Int. J. Electronic Security and Digital Forensics, 3(2), 151-163. info:/

  • July 2, 2010
  • 08:00 AM

Persuasion and other failures of will (but trust me on that sunscreen)

by Zen Faulkes in NeuroDojo

You don't have to read this. You could stop at any time. Couldn't you?

Everyone is going to say "Yes" to that question. We love to think that we are masters of our fate, captains of our destiny, our choices are ours alone. That notion is crucial to the ethical concept of agency, legal matters of intent, and much more.

But I'm sure everyone has had a moment like in video below. It starts at 1:58 and runs to 3:00:

It's that moment where you stop yourself, and go, "What am I doing?"

We don't........ Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 06:37 AM

It's the way they move - politicians' personalities inferred from their motion patterns

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

People form impressions about the personality of politicians simply from the way they move, according to a new study. This isn't your typical body-language investigation into double-armed hand-shakes, bitten lips and fidgety fingers. Rather Markus Koppensteiner and Karl Grammer devised a new system for mathematically describing the movement patterns of forty real German politicians giving speeches in parliament. Each 16-second, silent video was converted into a stick figure by using an interacti........ Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 06:22 AM

Fluorescent blue lights and intravenous drug use in public toilets

by Euan in Dr Euan Lawson| Doctor Writer

This study reports on the findings of an intriguing qualitative study with intravenous drug users (IDUs) in Plymouth. Apparently, but I readily admit I had no idea this was happening, there are now a number of public toilets that have fluorescent blue lights (FBL). The aim is to discourage IDUs from using public places to [...]... Read more »

  • July 2, 2010
  • 06:00 AM

Paucis Verbis card: Burns

by Michelle Lin in Academic Life In Emergency Medicine

In anticipation of one of the more injury-prone holidays, I thought it might be appropriate to review Burn Management in the Emergency Department. It's always good to review the rule of 9's, different classifications of burns, and indications for burn unit referral.Feel free to download this card and print on a 4'' x 6'' index card.[MS Word] [PDF]See other Paucis Verbis cards.ReferenceGOMEZ, R., & CANCIO, L. (2007). Management of Burn Wounds in the Emergency Department Emergency Medicine Cli........ Read more »

GOMEZ, R., & CANCIO, L. (2007) Management of Burn Wounds in the Emergency Department. Emergency Medicine Clinics of North America, 25(1), 135-146. DOI: 10.1016/j.emc.2007.01.005  

  • July 2, 2010
  • 05:45 AM

In the news this month: a drop in eta Carinae's stellar wind

by Megan in Rigel

are the violent explosions of massive stars, so bright that the events can be seen in distant galaxies. But not all apparent explosions are genuine supernovae. Some fall into the category of , the sudden increase in brightness of a star without the terminal explosion. One such impostor event was the , a star which is amongst the most massive known in the Milky Way. Located 7,500 light years away in the constellation of Carina, the star is five million times more luminous than the Sun and an est........ Read more »

Mehner, A., Davidson, K., Humphreys, R., Martin, J., Ishibashi, K., Ferland, G., & Walborn, N. (2010) A SEA CHANGE IN ETA CARINAE . The Astrophysical Journal, 717(1). DOI: 10.1088/2041-8205/717/1/L22  

  • July 2, 2010
  • 03:43 AM

Taking it in: Bacterial Endocytosis

by Lucas in thoughtomics

In my high school text books, bacteria were primarily defined in terms of what they were not. “Bacteria don’t have a nucleus”, “bacteria don’t have mitochondria”, “bacteria are not capable of complex membrane trafficking” and so on. But such boundaries seem to blur as more and more “eukaryote specific” properties pop up in [...]... Read more »

Lonhienne, T., Sagulenko, E., Webb, R., Lee, K., Franke, J., Devos, D., Nouwens, A., Carroll, B., & Fuerst, J. (2010) Endocytosis-like protein uptake in the bacterium Gemmata obscuriglobus. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1001085107  

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